Open Shelving Yay or Nay?!

If you love vintage farmhouse style, you will usually find an open shelf or two somewhere in the decor.   If you are on the fence about whether or not to switch to open shelving in your home, take a look at this post and see if this style is for you!

In Lindsay’s new house she has a ton of cabinet space, so she decided to go with open shelving on either side of her bay window.  This instantly made her kitchen look even bigger, because it draws your eye upward in her space!



Notice how the light color on the wall and removing the darker cabinets opened up this space.  Not to mention how fun it is to have a spot in the kitchen to style with fun vintage decor; resulting in a space is functional as well as pretty!

If you don’t have the option of taking down your upper cabinets because you rent your home, or the husband won’t let you…you can opt for taking of the cabinet doors like we did here…

This is a Before (pre-cabinet painting), and I couldn’t find a picture with the doors still on, so imagine with me. 🙂  And wait for the change it looks so much brighter after adding a fresh coat of paint.  If you want to see that transformation post click here.

Also, you can line the back of the cabinets with pretty wall paper,vintage maps or wrapping paper to add some character to the space.

I love how cute this bird’s nest print is that Lindsay found on Amazon!

Ahhhhh, so much better with the white. 🙂 Removing the cabinet doors opened up the space and allows for easy access to plates and cups.  And it also provides some space to decorate for the seasons on top of the cabinets too.

A few things to consider when opting for open shelving:

  1. It helps to have similar items/colors on the shelves when styling to keep it uniform and organized.  (Not to say it won’t work if you have all different style cups or glasses, but your eye will bounce around more, so just something to keep in mind).
  2. White dishes are a good choice to display.  It offers clean lines and a better option when decoration for holidays, (verses a colored plate that won’t be as forgiving) when table setting for the different seasons.  But this is not a hard and fast rule, it’s personal preference.   If you love color, have fun with it!  I know plenty of people that style up their shelves with color and it is so cute.  If it works for The Pioneer Woman, it works for me. 🙂
  3. Shelves tend to get a little more dusty then your traditional cabinets, but that does not bother us one bit!  The plates and cups get so much use anyway that they are frequently run through the dishwasher.  Anything that gets less use like platters and such, will require a quick rinse.

Kitchens are not the only place you can incorporate open shelving.  I have recently added a couple of shelves to replace the one in my bathroom/laundry room.

Laundry Room Before:

Don’t mind the terrible lighting, It has been raining so much this spring in New England.  The shelf above the washer/dryer was starting to rust and truth be told my 5′ 2″ self couldn’t reach it lol!  So we got a piece of reclaimed barn wood for free, cut it in half and added brackets from Lowes and it was done!  Now I can reach the bottom shelf and the top one holds some of my favorite vintage finds.


One more quick example of open shelving to enhance your space…this time in an office.

A few pipes and a piece of 8″ deep wood later and you have a spot to display a collection, books, photos or whatever you love!

So there you have it.  Let us know what you think of our open shelving and if its for you. 🙂  We say yay!!

Jolene and Lindsay



One Response to Open Shelving Yay or Nay?!

  1. Jolene K July 16, 2017 at 11:37 pm #

    Love it! Beautiful post!

Leave a Reply